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Judge Orders YouTube to Give All User Histories to Viacom



July 04, 2008 – Comments (8) | RELATED TICKERS: VIA , GOOGL , BKNG

"Google will have to turn over every record of every video watched by YouTube users, including users' names and IP addresses, to Viacom, which is suing Google for allowing clips of its copyright videos to appear on YouTube, a judge ruled Wednesday.

Viacom wants the data to prove that infringing material is more popular than user-created videos, which could be used to increase Google's liability if it is found guilty of contributory infringement.

Viacom filed suit against Google in March 2007, seeking more than $1 billion in damages for allowing users to upload clips of Viacom's copyright material. Google argues that the law provides a safe harbor for online services so long as they comply with copyright takedown requests.

Although Google argued that turning over the data would invade its users' privacy, the judge's ruling (.pdf) described that argument as "speculative" and ordered Google to turn over the logs on a set of four tera-byte hard drives.

The judge also turned Google's own defense of its data retention policies -- that IP addresses of computers aren't personally revealing in and of themselves, against it to justify the log dump.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation has already reacted, calling the order a violation of the Video Privacy Protection act that "threatens to expose deeply private information."

The order also requires Google to turn over copies of all videos that it has taken down for any reason.

Viacom also requested YouTube's source code, the code for identifying repeat copyright infringement uploads, copies of all videos marked private, and Google's advertising database schema.

Those requests were denied in whole, except that Google will have to turn over data about how often each private video has been watched and by how many persons." 

Good discussion over at 


AFP - Judge orders Google to give YouTube user data to Viacom, 02 July 0

Wired - Judge Orders YouTube to Give All User Histories to Viacom

List of assets owned by Viacom (from digg comments):

* Film Production and Distribution: Viacom International, Paramount Pictures, DreamWorks, Republic Pictures, MTV Films, Nickelodeon Movies, Go Fish Pictures

* Television Networks: Comedy Central, Logo, BET, Spike, TV Land, Nick at Nite, Nickelodeon, Noggin, The N, Nick Jr., TEENick, MTV, VH1, MTV2, CMT, MHD

* Television Production and Television Distribution: DreamWorks Television

* Video Gaming: Xfire, Harmonix, GameTrailers, Neopets

* Internet Sites: Screwattack


Since I love to post youtube videos with Steve Colbert and Capt Kirk, I guess I can expect to be arrested at some point. Well, I guess it will be an opportunity to get in shape while in jail, I hope to get my bench press up to 300+ and get some decent facial tattoos.

After my PCLN pitch my days are numbered....

Top dugg response:

From Srcc  :

"Why does Viacom need all of this information to figure out whether or not a video is copyright? Why does the end user even come into the equation? This judge got it wrong. The people behind MTV, battle bots, and that Star Trek where Kirk kills god don't need our personal info."

8 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On July 04, 2008 at 1:14 AM, Tastylunch (28.65) wrote:

This reminds of good old Napster. Well the party is over fellas, You don't have to go home but you can't stay here. Time to  move away from ole Napster and Youtube and onto Itunes and Hulu 

I really doubt Viacom is going to come after you ( Assume you are however being facetious). I imagine people who created youtube accounts and uploaded said contraband videos will be closer to the line of fire. But really are they going to fine thousands to millions of people? That's PR suicide.

I think what is more important RE: this ruling is the precedent it sets for any site you visit. What you view on the internet may now be considered public record if this holds up unlike say your library record. Nothing like having a freedom taken away before the day before the holiday eh?

I'd expect Google to appeal. I Imagine too thatthe ACLU is going bonkers.


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#2) On July 04, 2008 at 2:11 AM, motleyanimal (38.21) wrote:

Well, anyway, that wasn't me masturbating on that video.

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#3) On July 04, 2008 at 2:23 AM, abitare (30.07) wrote:

If you watch this you can go to jail with me: 

He is dead Jim

or Capt Kirks Kissing Montage:


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#4) On July 04, 2008 at 3:55 AM, AnomaLee (28.85) wrote:

G8 summit aims to stop piracy once and for all

While the headlines surrounding next week’s G8 summit mostly concern climate change and development in Africa, there’s also a new international plan for piracy measures being discussed,

Governments want to make the internet Cuban or Chinese. They don't give a s*** about copyrights. Give me a frickin break...

abitarecatania, Remember me telling you this... The internet will be much different next decade and thereafter. Television and hard disc formars are already obsolete. It's only sensical to think these industries will join with the telecom industry to protect their revenue streams copyrighted media. The MPAA and RIAA are either worse or no different than steel unions.

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#5) On July 04, 2008 at 11:59 AM, GS751 (26.86) wrote:

another example of the erosion of civil liberties in USA....

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#6) On July 05, 2008 at 12:22 AM, lquadland10 (< 20) wrote:

Is goog a cfr member?  Will it go to the supreme court? I ask these questions because of my suspicious way of thinking.To my simple way of thinking this is just one more step of the G8 and the TPN to gain control of the World's population. What better way to gain information on who is watching subversive and dare I say (tung in cheek) treasons and terorisic clips of Ron Paul. I mean he does support a revolution. Look at the NRA clip (See Glen Beck) for info. on what happened during Huracain Katrina and the abuse of gov and law enforcement. 2nd amendment went right out the door. This is just some of what the TPN is looking at. Since its founding in 1992, TPN has single-mindedly devoted itself to strengthening the
EU-US transatlantic partnership, but recent experience makes it abundantly clear that
progress has been insufficient. The task remains urgent. Our partnership must be global
in scope and the stakes could not be higher. The EU-US summit of June 2003 gave new political impetus for a strengthened
transatlantic partnership, but was only a first step. Both the US and EU now need to
mobilize our political, business and civil society leaderships in a sustained effort to
deepen and broaden transatlantic partnership on the basis of an updated strategy, action
plan and institutional framework. Certain fundamental transatlantic differences have become progressively more
pronounced and disruptive since the end of the Cold War, erupting into crisis over Iraq.
However, the central and widely shared conclusion of this 18-month TPN project is that
much more unites Europe and the United States than divides us at the outset of this new
century. The concept of "linkage" between our economic, defense & security, and political
interests formed the central strategic vision set out in our October 1995 publication
("Toward Transatlantic Partnership: The Partnership Project"), and continues to drive the
recommendations set out in this report. A European strategy to build the European Union as a geopolitical counterweight to the
United States would undermine the relationship, as would a US strategy of indifference
or hostility to the emergence of the EU as a global actor and strong partner. Rather, a strategy to strengthen our transatlantic partnership must: articulate the common
purpose; build on strengths and reinforce linkages; and accommodate differences,
including those tied to differing constitutional competences and capabilities of the
European Union and the United States. Viewed in this light:
· The economic foundations for strengthened EU/US partnership are strong.
· The defense and security foundations for strengthened EU/US partnership need to be developed, and must complement the preeminent role that NATO has played in
Euro-Atlantic security for the past 54 years. · Potential for strengthening the political foundations for EU/US partnership now exists in areas of vital common interest, and should grow. · The institutions and processes comprising the transatlantic "system" need to be re-assessed.
A strategy for a strengthened transatlantic partnership therefore needs to link a bold new
agenda for economic collaboration with a commitment to enhanced joint action on our
highest shared political priorities. It must also provide for the progressive development,
within the same framework, of a broad security partnership between the US and the EU, 5

together with an efficient and mutually reinforcing interface between the EU and NATO.
Progress will also depend on a broader basis of public support on both sides of the
Atlantic, which can only be generated through the creation of a highly visible and
effective transatlantic "community of action".

A 10-point, 10-year action plan

Based on the foregoing conclusions and the resulting recommendations set out in chapter
IV of this report, TPN proposes the following 10-point, 10-year action plan for deeper
and broader transatlantic partnership, to be implemented from 2005 through 2015 on the
basis of jointly agreed objectives, actions and benchmarks for progress. Economic
1. Deepen and broaden the transatlantic market, with a view to its completion by
2015, and an accelerated 2010 target date for: · Financial services and capital markets · Civil aviation · The Digital Economy (privacy, security and intellectual property rights)
· Competition Policy · Regulatory Cooperation 2. Strengthen transatlantic economic and monetary cooperation in a practical and pragmatic manner.
3. Revitalize the WTO Doha negotiations as a matter of highest urgency, building on
the basis of progress made. At the same time, jointly engage the rest of the world
in a broader dialogue on strategy and cooperation for growth and development ­
including how to improve the effectiveness of multilateral institutions.
Defense and Security
4. Promote more open transatlantic defense markets and closer cooperation
between transatlantic defense industries, including a policy and regulatory
framework that facilitates the transatlantic transfer of defense technologies.

5. Further develop the NATO/EU interface, while continuing to clarify respective
future roles and capabilities in the military sphere consistent with the agreed
"Berlin Plus" principles.

6. Develop a framework for broader, permanent EU/US security dialogue, based on
the complementarities of US security doctrine and the emerging EU Security

7. Build a transatlantic "community of action" for regional and global cooperation, founded on six priorities: · Peace, democracy and development in the extended Middle East · The war against terrorism
· Curbing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction · Fighting AIDS and infectious diseases · The long-term integration of China into the global community
· The further transformation of Russia into a democratic state, market economy and strategic partner
8. Deepen practical cooperation on energy and climate change, building on the agreement on R&D cooperation for the hydrogen economy.
9. Stimulate the constructive involvement of relevant communities of interest from
American and European civil society in collaborative actions on transatlantic
partnership priorities.
10. Agree by December 2005 on the major elements of a "Transatlantic Partnership
Agreement" between the EU and the US to be implemented from 2007, building
on the 1995 New Transatlantic Agenda and reflecting the strategy proposed in
this report. As part of this process:
· Focus the annual EU/US summit process to provide strategic direction and impetus to the transatlantic partnership; develop communications with the
NATO summit process as well.
· Institute regular informal EU/US consultation at ministerial level in advance of EU/US summits, supported by permanent joint policy planning. · Strengthen the institutional structure for on-going transatlantic political dialogue, building on the evolving Transatlantic Legislators Dialogue (TLD)
between Members of the European Parliament and the US Congress.

II. Introduction The need to strengthen transatlantic partnership

Since its founding in 1992, TPN has single-mindedly devoted itself to strengthening the
EU-US transatlantic partnership, based on the three-fold conviction that:
· The end of the Cold War would unleash global forces that were bound to affect the policies, principles and institutions upon which the transatlantic partnership had been
built during the previous half-century; · The emergence of the European Union as an actor on the world stage, and confirmation of the United States as the world's sole superpower, would need to be
accommodated in any new transatlantic design;
· As a result, new foundations for a global transatlantic partnership would have to be conceived and systematically put in place. 1
Over the past decade, events around the world have indeed carried us ever further from
the terra firma of our twentieth century political relationship built on the Atlantic
Alliance, with all its certainties and comforting routines. More recent experience also
makes it abundantly clear that progress on strengthening the political foundations of the
transatlantic partnership has been insufficient. The imminent enlargement of the
European Union to include much of the former Soviet bloc adds to the urgency of the

The stakes could not be higher. At risk is the most fundamental guarantor of the security,
freedom and prosperity of our peoples - the ability, perhaps even the will, of our elected
leaders to work effectively together to secure those common goals in the face of new and
volatile global conditions.
A watershed for strengthened partnership: the EU/US summit of June 2003

The President of the United States and the Presidency of the European Union met for
their annual summit in Washington in June 2003 at arguably the lowest point in
transatlantic relations since the creation of the Alliance. This low point was due notably -
but by no means exclusively - to the lingering mutual resentment and mistrust generated
1 Previous TPN recommendations for a more formalized EU-US partnership have been published in a series of Towards Transatlantic Partnership documents: · A European Strategy (1994) · The Partnership Project (1995) 8

· Cooperation Project Report (1998

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#7) On July 05, 2008 at 11:02 AM, abitare (30.07) wrote:

Youtube Replies to Viacom 1 Day 176,000 Views:


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#8) On July 05, 2008 at 12:19 PM, lquadland10 (< 20) wrote:


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